Many of you may have expected the OnePlus 7 Pro for months. Today we are going to review this new flagship mobile phone 2019 from OnePlus. Zoom!
Design & Hardware
In terms of pure technical features, OnePlus uses the most powerful Qualcomm processor as usual, this time the Snapdragon 855, which is coupled with 6 GB of RAM, which can increase to 8 GB and 12 GB. It’s very fast, and oversized like most flagships today. Storage is 128GB or 256GB. During this test OnePlus 7 Pro the brand provided me with the highest quality model and includes 12GB of RAM and 256GB of storage.
This is reflected in high scores on Antutu Benchmark with 368,000, very slightly above my results with the Mi 9 and well ahead of competitors like Samsung Galaxy S10+. As with all the latest flagships tested recently, I have experienced absolutely no slowdown, whether in everyday navigation or on games like Fortnite or PUBG, even with the graphics pushed to the maximum, and the OnePlus 7 Pro is by far the most fluid that I have had in my hands, with the iPhone XS.
At the port level, OnePlus offers exactly the same combo as on the 6T, with the dual SIM, but no microSD port to increase storage, it’s a bit of a shame.
Here is THE big highlight of OnePlus 7 Pro for me: its screen. The 6.67 inch curved AMOLED tile is simply beautiful. The very fine contours, and especially the absence of a notch, offer a perfect experience, and I find the color rendering very natural (you can adjust it if it is not to your liking). Its 516 ppi resolution and QHD+ definition (3120 x 1440 px) are what you would expect from a high-end product.
One of the new features of OnePlus 7 Pro is the refresh rate which increases to 90 Hz, which improves visual fluidity during a swipe or animation for example. You really feel the difference, and this screen is a great asset when choosing between the OnePlus 7 and OnePlus 7 Pro.
On the sound side, the OnePlus 7 Pro gets closer to the S10+, which was impressive at this level and slams the P30 Pro. By offering stereo sound and Dolby Atmos compatibility, OnePlus offers a real video immersion, especially with such a screen.
In terms of available colours, this OnePlus 7 Pro is available in 3 models: glossy black, almond and Nebula Blue. This is the model I had in my hand, and I find it both modern, but above all more sober than what Huawei does with the P30 Pro and Honor with the View 20, whose appearance makes you forget the premium side.
Like the OnePlus 6T, the OnePlus 7 Pro sees its fingerprint sensor placed under the screen, and I find it particularly well placed and especially very fast. Samsung was putting its technology forward, I don’t see any difference between the two. Facial recognition is also part of the game, after recording the facial information, you can adjust the launch of the popup camera as soon as you click on the power button. OnePlus 7 Pro is water and dust resistant, but the brand has not passed IP68 certification.
To summarize the design part and technical characteristics of this test, the OnePlus 7 Pro is for me an achievement for the brand, with overpowering specs, but above all a real evolution of design, which makes this 7 Pro very top of the range.
OxygenOS: always at the top
I’m not going to give you the full OxygenOS presentation that you can find in my OnePlus 6T test. To summarize my impression, it is my favorite overcoat with OneUI from Sasmung, and the Stock version of the Pixels. For the release of the OnePlus 7 Pro some new features have been added, and will also be present on previous models.
The first one called “Zen Mode” is a good idea, but the execution saddens me. Like the digital well-being integrated from Android Pie, OnePlus wants to help reduce smartphone addiction, and Zen mode can send you a notification to warn you that your use is too intense (from 2h non-stop for example). The smartphone therefore offers you the option of switching to Zen mode, which locks your smartphone for 20 minutes. You no longer receive any notifications (except calls), and can only access the camera and emergency call.
That’s the problem with this feature. There is no way out of Zen mode when you started the stopwatch (I even tried the reboot, the timer resumes). In case of a problem or emergency, not being able to stop it or program some numbers in addition to emergencies is a bad thing in my opinion. Nevertheless, activating the mode is a choice and OnePlus makes these points clear before the start of the stopwatch.
The game mode is also improved, and is useful for cutting notifications during the session. Another minor new feature is the ability to record the screen in video. It’s already present on some Android versions, but it’s a little something extra. For the rest, OxygenOS is still as pleasant to use on a daily basis, and I find that this last year the Android versions from the manufacturers have really improved/purified.
Photo: three rear sensors, one invisible camera
The picture was for me the weak point of the OnePlus 6T, even if the smartphone was doing pretty well. On this OnePlus 7 Pro, the brand has made a real leap forward, and comes after the best in this category (it’s subjective): the Pixel 3 and the P30 Pro. OnePlus offers on the 7 Pro a triple rear sensor with a Sony IMX 586 48MP main sensor (focal length: 26mm) found on the Xiaomi Mi 9. It opens at f/1.6 and is combined with an 8MP x3 optical zoom that opens at f/2.4 (focal length: 78mm), and a 16MP wide angle that opens at f/2.2 (focal length: 17mm).
In use, the main sensor offers excellent shots under normal conditions, and the night mode has improved significantly. I hadn’t kept the 6T as the main smartphone, because the picture was problematic, it’s no longer the case on the 7 Pro. The palette is very interesting as it can be the case on the S10+ for example.
The video mode offers high-performance optical stabilization and can be up to 60 fps at 4K. I also appreciated the ultra slow motion mode which, even if it only offers “240 frames per second”, is much easier to use than some competitors who go up to 960 fps.
OnePlus is catching up with the competition at the photo level, and even if it is not the best in its category, it is placed in the lead car. There is no basic face smoothing here, which is a weakness of Xiaomi smartphones. I find the rendering of this OnePlus 7 Pro more natural than that of the Mi 9 for example.
But THE great novelty of this OnePlus 7 Pro is this retractable Selfie camera. On the one hand, the waouh effect is there, but above all it leaves plenty of space on the screen, and makes the smartphone very pleasant to use. For those who doubt durability, the brand announces 300,000 cycles, and a fall detector brings it in as soon as the smartphone starts to fall (I forgot to capture it on video, but it’s quite stylish). The shots are also very good and the 16MP sensor opens at f/2.0.
OnePlus 7 Pro battery life: excellent but….
Undoubtedly the 2018-2019 batch of smartphones offers us models with very nice autonomies. Like the P30 Pro, Mate 20 Pro, Mi 9 or View 20, the autonomy of the OnePlus 7 Pro is excellent, and the 4000 mAh capacity really does the job.
With intensive use, you will last a long day with only one charge, and less active users will last well over a day and a half or even two days. In case of a problem, the Wrap Charge is on board, and I recharged 60% of the OnePlus 7 Pro in just over 31 minutes. So OnePlus is at the level of the competitor, and Apple will seriously have to think about integrating its fast charger into the box, it’s almost ridiculous.
Carl Pei doesn’t think that the Qi protocol is still powerful enough and that users really need it, so wireless charging is missing from this OnePlus 7 Pro, and I think that’s a shame.
Opinion on the OnePlus 7 Pro
Like the Mi 9, the OnePlus 7 Pro offers impressive technical features. Like the Mi 9 it features a 48 MP Sony photo sensor. Like the S10+, its design is very high-end, with the most beautiful screen on the market today. OnePlus wanted to do very high quality with this 7 Pro, and it was a success. Even if the lack of wireless charging is a negative point for me, the price puts it right between these two smartphones.
It is for me a better value for money than the S10+ and the P30 Pro sold more expensive. It is however more expensive than the Mi9, but I will not hesitate to pay the difference to have access to a more pleasant overcoat, and especially a screen light years away in terms of quality.
Now it remains to be seen how it compares to the OnePlus 7, which is sold less, which is justified by the difference in design, and a sensor less at the back. Answer in a few weeks, in my OnePlus 7 test.
For me, it is the smartphone of the OnePlus achievement. The brand’s mantra is to offer the right price for its smartphone, and wanted to mark the occasion with an ultra high-end version to fight against flagships. Far from wanting to stir up the Android/iOS war, why put more in an iPhone XS Max today?